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October 26, 2016
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Casino dreams inch along

The assumption among some of those involved in the discussion is that community acceptance of a project will be part of the deal, at least in part because of what’s happening in Saratoga Springs, where a majority of the voting population, 57%, voted against the constitutional amendment that allowed the creation of the casinos. There is a strong movement in that city to oppose a casino because they believe it will not be good for the health of main street businesses or the local economy.

Baez said the board could have to contend with a last-minute application. He said there could be a developer who is doing all the homework out of the area, who will come in at the last minute and say, “Here’s my billion-dollar project. I’m ready to go.”

“Well, if they do that, I’d tell you from my experience, I would reject it,” said Sorensen.

Ira Steingart, who is chair of the committee, said, “Although this is economic development, I think all nine legislators need to be involved in determining how we’re going to create this process.”

He said, “We don’t want to hurt the projects we support, but we have to be prudent about how we do it.”